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History

“The Bell Rock Tavern” is named after the Bell Rock Lighthouse. First lit in 1811 & built by Scottish Engineer Robert Stevenson.

The rock on which it is built  is called “The Bell Rock” because of a 14th century attempt by the Abbot from Arbroath install a warning bell on it.

The rock was the scene of many shipwrecks as it lies just below the surface of the sea for all but a few hours at low tide.

According to legend, the bell lasted only one year before it was removed by a Dutch pirate. A more plausible explanation has it that it simply washed away.

“The Bell Rock Tavern” or simply “The Bell” has stood on the same spot, on Dalgleish Street, in the Heart of the Community since 1887. A Tayport directory of the time lists it as a “Spirit Dealer” (pre naming of the establishment to Bell Rock)

The original entrance  to the Public Bar was on the side of the building (now the Fire Exit, beneath the Lighthouse Mural) and the Bar Area (where the fireplace is now, at the bottom of the stairs) extended no further than the stairs. The original bar itself being on the wall to the left, where the Restrooms are now situated.

In the early 1970’s the Bar was extended by knocking through to the house next door & the Bar itself was moved up to the top corner where it remains. The Lounge Upstairs (now restaurant) once housed rooms to let.

The entrance customers pass through today was originally the doorway to the house next door.

The exterior has remained largely unchanged with the exception of the signage & artwork. Prior to the Lighthouse Mural, a painting of a Bell could be seen above the entrance. The earliest version of the familiar semi circular mural, an advert for “Ushers Pale Ale” appeared in around 1930. The painting has been retouched & repainted entirely several times over the years. The hand painted signage has had the Bell change from Bar to Tavern, reflecting the tastes of the time.

Extensive renovations took place in 2008 when Liz & Ronnie took over. The lounge was refitted & replaced with a 45 seat Restaurant & Bar and a state of the art kitchen was installed bringing the Bell Rock up to speed & able to easily cater to todays busy demands.

 

Landlord Timeline:

1887: Thomas Caffray. Spirit Dealer (From 1887 Tayport Directory. Pre naming of the Establishment)

Circa 1900: John Wilkie 

1926 – 1936: William Greig

1936 – 1950: Leana Greig (later Jones)

1950 – Early 60’s: Dick Beattie

Early  60’s – 75: Jim Parker

1975 – 1977: Mr Walker

1977 – 1981: Ken Sturrock

1981 – 2008: Joan & Dave Paterson

2008 – 2011 : Liz & Ronnie Alexander

2011 – Present: Brad Eggleston

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